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The WS-PS model of the labour market The Macro approach to the Labour market.

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Presentation on theme: "The WS-PS model of the labour market The Macro approach to the Labour market."— Presentation transcript:

1 The WS-PS model of the labour market The Macro approach to the Labour market

2 The WS-PS model of the Labour market IS-LM model examines 2 markets : the goods market and the money market This allows us to determine 2 variables: The equilibrium Output The equilibrium rate of interest But we’ve assumed that prices stay fixed!! This might be OK in the short run But is otherwise unrealistic

3 The WS-PS model of the Labour market Problem: We want to determine prices (inflation) as well as output and interest rates How do we do that? We have to add another market (i.e. Another equilibrium equation) It turns out that the required market is the labour market This is because it is the market for the main factor of production

4 The WS-PS model of the Labour market Definitions The Wage-Setting equation The structural rate of unemployment The Price-Setting equation

5 Definitions Employed population (ILO definition) 1. People that are at least 15 years of age; 2. People that have worked (even for a single hour) during the reference period even if self employed, or employed in a family business; 3. People that are employed but on temporary leave of absence (illness, maternity leave, training, etc.); 4. Members of the armed forces, apprentices, paid interns, are part of the active population.

6 Definitions Economically Active population in France (ILO definition, 2004)

7 Definitions Unemployed (ILO definition) According to the 1982 definition, a person is unemployed if he/she is a member of the working age population (15 years or more) and fulfils the following conditions: 1. Is not employed : has not worked a single hour during the reference period; 2. Is available for work within 15 days ; 3. Is actively searching for employment.

8 Definitions Total French Population (60 Million) Working Age Population (39) Economically Inactive Population (21) Labour force (Economically active population) (27) Economically Inactive Population (12) Employed population (25) Unemployed (2)

9 Definitions Total French Population (60 Million) Working Age Population (39) Economically Inactive Population (21) Labour force (Economically active population) (27) Economically Inactive Population (12) Employed population (25) Unemployed (2)

10 Definitions Total French Population (60 Million) Working Age Population (39) Economically Inactive Population (21) Labour force (Economically active population) (27) Economically Inactive Population (12) Employed population (25) Unemployed (2)

11 Definitions Employed 24,6 Unemployed 3,2 Inactive 12, Average monthly flows (France, 2005)

12 Definitions First Oil Shock Second Oil Shock Recession Economic recovery The unemployment rate in France

13 The WS-PS model of the Labour market Definitions The Wage-Setting equation The structural rate of unemployment The Price-Setting equation

14 The WS Equation Wages can be determined in several ways Individual negotiations Branch agreements (Trade union negotiations) National legislations Two main factors play a role: The reservation wage  The wage at which one is indifferent between working or remaining unemployed Market conditions  These determine the bargaining power of the employee.

15 The WS Equation The bargaining power (BP) of a worker is a function of two factors: The ease with which the firm can replace him  Higher likelyhood of replacement ⇒ ↓ BP  This is linked to the skills of the worker and/or the job characteristics The ease with which he can find another job  Higher likelyhood of finding job ⇒ ↑ BP  This is linked to the level of unemployment

16 The WS Equation The nominal wage W is a function : Of the expected level of prices P e  Negotiations occur at discrete intervals (every X years)  They are based on the expected purchasing power for the duration of the interval Of the rate of unemployment u  High unemployment reduces the BP of workers Market factors z  Institutional factors (unemployment benefits)  Structural changes in the economy (skill biased TC)

17 The WS Equation Unemployment rate u Real Wage Real wages are a negative function of the rate of unemployment WS

18 The WS Equation Unemployment rate u Real Wage Real wages are a positive function of market conditions WS(z) WS’(z’>z)

19 The WS-PS model of the Labour market Definitions The Wage-Setting equation The structural rate of unemployment The Price-Setting equation

20 The PS Equation The actual level of prices is determined by the wage rate W represents the marginal cost of production  In the SR, output is a function of labour: Y=N  Assumption : constant returns to scale (1 + μ) : markup on the goods markets  μ=0 : perfectly competitive market  μ>0 : Imperfectly competitive market  In choosing μ, the firms influence the level of the real wage

21 The PS Equation oRearranging the PS equation allows us to express the real wage as a function of the markup rate... oThis way we can draw the PS equation in the same space as the WS equation

22 The PS Equation Real Wage The real wage induced by the PS equation is independent of the rate of unemployment PS Unemployment rate u

23 The WS-PS model of the Labour market Definitions The Wage-Setting equation The structural rate of unemployment The Price-Setting equation

24 The structural rate of unemployment The structural rate of unemployment u n equalises WS and PS oThe structural rate of unemployment:  Is independent of short-term fluctuations  As a result it is often called “natural” but this is incorrect ou n is a function of the structural parameters on the labour market z  Unemployment benefits, production technology, etc. ou n is a function of the structural parameters on the goods market μ  Barriers to entry, level of competition, etc.

25 The structural rate of unemployment The labour market equilibrium implies that the wages determined through the bargaining process are consistent with the price setting behaviour of firms A unun WS PS Real Wage Unemployment rate u

26 The structural rate of unemployment A unun WS PS WS’ 1. An increase in unemployment benefits shifts WS to the right (better labour market conditions)... A’ u’ n 2....Which increases the structural rate of unemployment Real Wage Unemployment rate u

27 The structural rate of unemployment A unun WS PS PS’ 1. An increase in the level of competition reduces the markup... u’ n A’ Which reduces the structural level of unemployment Real Wage Unemployment rate u


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